It is a fact that children depend on direction from their parents as to what to do until they are of a certain age. For illustration, very few children are able to get away with not going to bed when they are supposed to, weekday or weekend. As parents we make our children go to bed early on week days because of school and because we love our children, but let’s face it those two hours of quiet it gives us before we go to bed — almost like winning the lottery every night.
While children may ask “why” questions at times in respect of what is demanded of them, the why question typically is not a debate question, rather it typically is an “I seek to understand” question.
The “why” question typically reeks not of rebellion but request for understanding.
Suppose we define a “Child Conductor” to be a person who tells a child what to do. Parents then are a particular type of Child Conductor.
Over time, children can develop faith in Child Conductors to the extent they begin to obey without questioning. Sometimes, however, children learn to distrust Child Conductors. The difference of course is, in the first scenario, children come to the realization that Child Conductors truly care for them. In the alternate scenario, children come to realize Child Conductors either have selfish ulterior motives for their directives, or no longer know enough to direct with wisdom. Where knowledge is the problem, it is the case children have outgrown their conductors. In aggregate, Child Conductors either gain or lose trust of children they are entrusted with conducting through life.
Much like the relationship between children and Child Conductors, trust initially is bestowed without regard for evidence that trust is deserved. Subsequently, however, trust either is earned or lost. Think relations between teachers and students, doctors and patients, investors and stock markets etc. In each set of relationships specified, there is trust at commencement of the relationship — trust that subsequently is substantiated or found to be misplaced (Remember Bernard Madoff, the man who ran a ponzi scheme on the doorstep of Wall Street?).
There exists a third outcome of trust relationships not oft discussed, however, which is, when the end outcome of a trust relationship has nothing whatsoever to do with actions of parties to a relationship, trust is neither earned nor lost; rather trust is abused.
Whenever trust is abused, at least one party to a relationship does not care for the relationship, yet embarked on and remained in the relationship. Not only are such persons selfish, they are abusive. There is nothing whatsoever that can be done to fix these sort of toxic relationships other than a change in motives of the abusive party or parties. In such situations, the only remedy available to the non-abusive party is truncation of the relationship at the earliest possible time.
If we are to make the most of our relationships, we pull those that earn our trust closer into our inner circles. We love those whose knowledge no longer is sufficient to advise us, and gently let them know we can make our own way. We find ways to limit interactions with those who only care about their own agendas — if such persons are responsive to our good actions, it may not always be the case total avoidance is necessary.
Those who never respond to us on basis of quality of our actions? We avoid like toxic waste.
People who never respond to quality of our actions are like toxic waste, only to be avoided.
What toxic waste do you continue to tolerate in your life? You need a plan. Today is as good as any for coming up with your personalized, custom made avoidance plan for toxic waste.
Your plan need not be hasty, hurried, or panicky. It needs to be realistic, targeted, progressive, and desirous of creating new balance in your life.
The target time frame may be days, weeks, months, or years. Regardless, it is your personalized, custom made plan to be put into effect by yourself, at your own pace, in your own way, colored by your very own personal idiosyncrasies.
Time is of the essence.